A single bluefish tuna sold for $37,500 on Jan. 5 during the year’s first auction at a famous fish market in Tokyo, Japan.
Kiyoshi Kimura, the president of a Japanese sushi chain, bought the fish at the re-opening of the Tsukiji market. The fish weighed 400 pounds and he paid 4.5 million yen for it.
“From the amount of fat, the quality of meat to the shape, everything is perfect. I’m happy. It’s a great buy,” Kimura said.
Kimura has been the top bidder at the auction for four years in a row. In 2013, he paid a record $1.3 million for the tuna. Last year, he purchased 370 pounds of frozen tuna for $50,000.
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Prices of bluefin tuna have risen in recent years because of dwindling global stocks and an increase in consumer interest for the delicacy. However, the price has lowered a little since 2007, in part because the number of catches rose this year, thanks to favorable weather conditions. Some also attributed lower prices this year to the absence of Hong Kong-based Taste of Japan Group, which has won the auction in previous years.
The auction followed news that the 80-year-old Tsukiji market will move to a new location by November 2016. The new market, which was briefly delayed because of concerns regarding soil contamination, will be on the man-made island of Toyosu in Tokyo Bay.